Memorial of Blessed Rolando Rivi

Today is the feast day of Blessed Rolando Rivi, the young seminarian who was killed in hatred of the faith by communist partisans in Italy just before the end of the Second World War. He was beatified last October. See my special page about him here.

When someone has the status of “Blessed” in the Church, his or her feast day may only be celebrated in the local area where the cause for canonization was undertaken (e.g., in the diocese that the person was from). Sometimes it is extended to additional areas where the Blessed may have lived or worked, or that might otherwise be relevant for some special reason. But beyond those particular areas, the feast day may not be celebrated liturgically. Thus, for example, it would be illicit for a priest in the United States today to celebrate the Memorial of Blessed Rolando Rivi at Mass or in the Liturgy of the Hours.

In this regard I have a humorous (at least to me) story. In my previous assignment I was chaplain of a high school named for Pope John Paul II. After he was beatified, I wanted to be able to celebrate his feast day at the school. So, in collaboration with the Bishop, I drafted a letter which went to the Congregation for Divine Worship requesting this permission (which, by default, is granted to the entire diocese, not just to one place in it). It took several months to receive the (affirmative) response. Then, just a few weeks after we received it, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops voted to extend the feast day to the entire country!

So, we had the special privilege for a couple of weeks anyways.

Blessed Rolando Rivi, pray for us!

This entry was posted in Ad Hoc and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.